SANDY A 16-year-old girl who was the subject of an Amber Alert here over the weekend was not kidnapped, Sandy police announced today.
However, the 16-year-old boy who Robyn Atkinson was found with was charged in juvenile court with harboring, a misdemeanor.
Atkinson, who has a diminished mental capacity, according to police, was missing for 25 hours. An Amber Alert was issued Saturday. She was eventually found at the house of a fellow Alta High School classmate based on a tip.
When officers went to the door, the boy answered and initially told them Atkinson wasn't there, said Sandy Police Sgt. Victor Quezada. But when the officers pressed and said they needed to speak to the boy's parents, he admitted she was there.
The girl had been hiding in the boy's basement room. The boy's parents weren't even aware she was there as she would hide when they came downstairs, Quezada said.
Atkinson was not abducted, but rather ran away, he said. She also told the teen boy that she had run away, Quezada said.
"She did go to his house willingly," he said. "He did not hold her against her will. She could have left when she wanted to."
Quezada added that Atkinson was not sexually assaulted when she spent the night at the boy's house. The two mostly just hung-out, he said.
But even though she ran away on her own, once the boy knew about it, that made his actions illegal. Furthermore, lying to police could have also been a misdemeanor obstruction charge.
Although it turned out Atkinson was never kidnapped, Quezada said his department does not regret issuing an Amber Alert."We would do the same thing if we had to do it over again," he said. "We got a child back home where they belong. The community came together. It was awesome the way everything fell into place. The system we have does work effectively. If it was your child missing, you'd want everything that could possible be done to bring her back. We're very comfortable with the way it went down."
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